Monthly Archives: April 2013

It’s not a perfect plan, but it’s the one we’ve got…*

*Lyrics from St. Vincent‘s Champagne Year from the Strange Mercy album. I still really adore this album, and this song really just felt appropriate for this post. I don’t think I’ve used it before, but I apologize if I have. Plus, we at the new job were all discussing that we felt that this coming year was going to be good. Perhaps not a champagne year, but, well, we could all use a bit of a respite from doom, couldn’t we?

DURING: Exterior, mid-new roof. I neglected to do before shots of the exterior because the place was surrounded by snow every time we saw it until we started.

So, I’ve been pretty absent from the blog lately, and, well, that’s because I’ve been pretty busy in real life. We got the pied-à-deux livable, and then had to immediately return to life in the Big House, in part because I was asked to help some clients design a whole house remodel. You heard that right: they found a fixer in an incredible neighborhood (on a coveted street) and wanted to just go for it. And they requested me. (Picture a small tear of gratitude welling in my eye.)

Having seen Dave’s craftsmanship and my design work in this kitchen and bath, as well as my entire house, they asked to have us come through the house and toss out a few ideas. You can’t imagine how overwhelming it is to meet new people, have brokers, builders, and other subs there, and to try to get to know someone’s taste/aesthetic/vibe right away. As we walked through the house, I got a feeling right away for what it should look like. For how it should be changed to meet the needs of a modern family. I felt like I could do a good job. And I was scared shitless.

read on…

Suzanne, the plans they made put an end to you…*

*Lyrics from James Taylor’s classic Fire and Rain. James Taylor equals Massachusetts to me. And this song is sad, and mournful, and at times joyful, and really feels like an anthem for the week we all just shared. All my love to the families and friends of those we lost this week. 

Cape Cod, Race Point Beach, sunset, August 2011.

I’m from Massachusetts. All my life, whenever I’ve left the area where I grew up in Western Massachusetts, people outside the area have assumed that if I said I was from Massachusetts that I was obviously from Boston. Now, if you’re even a little familiar with Massachusetts, you’ll know that you could never confuse the two regions (western v eastern Mass).

Western Mass (aka The Pioneer Valley) from Mount Tom, August 2011.

First, there’s the accent – ours is vacant, or perhaps vaguely Northeastern American, but not distinctive enough to make fun of (sadly). Second, there’s the city part. I grew up in a rural, farming area, where ‘city’ meant a main street with three or four blocks of shops. My hometown is approximately 30,000 people large, and the town where my parents lived in when they were married (and we were small) was populated in the three digits. One general store, one main street, that’s about it. Third was the weather. We had vastly different storm systems, often cutting diagonally through the state, with the Eastern part getting rain, and the Western part getting snow, or Eastern Mass getting a hurricane/nor’easter, while Western Mass got nothing. They were coastal, we were in a plain between ‘mountain’ ranges (sorry actual mountain dwellers, we called those short hill-ish things mountains, so that’s what they are to me). My experience of Massachusetts set a mild rivalry between west and east – although we did grow up saying wicked a lot – and we all sort of understood that you could never lump us together as a whole. Not really. I mean, sure, we all rooted for the same sports teams (but so did most of New England), and we all voted the same way (not block to block, mind you, but when averaged out there is more blue than red, but not by much), but we were different.

After this past week of events in Boston, I’ve never been prouder to be from Massachusetts than I am now. read on…

I’m waking up, I feel it in my bones*…

*Lyrics from Radioactive by Imagine Dragons from their album Night Visions. I’ll admit to not listening to the whole album yet. I’ll admit to finding this album by the ‘top album’ feature on iTunes. I’ll admit that this video is bizarre. This song is rather pop-like, and not my usual fare, but the lyrics, and the mood suited my own today, so I used it. Maybe the album will be a good one for spring runs, or spring cleaning, or spring lounging in the sun that is finally penetrating our atmosphere and shining down on us again. Let’s all have a listen on spotify, and report back.

Need I say more?

Spring. She took a long time to get here this year. Maybe she didn’t but it sort of felt like that these past few weeks. Probably because I’ve been living back in The Big House, and away from my normal routine with my husband. He’s never worked this much before (this is his busy season, so to speak, but this is ridiculous), and we’ve never had two homes to keep us apart. Jeff’s office is in the city (well, Brooklyn, but you get the idea) so he MUST be down there during the week. And I’ve got my own things are brewing back at home, working on a new project with Dave from Innovative for some amazing clients on an amazing house. I’ve needed to be nearby for time-sensitive decisions about plans, materials, budgets, etc., while Jeff has needed to be buried in his work for his own time-sensitive deadlines. So we’ve been experiencing the season apart from one another, and our own work has kept us from having any real quality time.

So, this spring, which is finally springing forth, is really a long time coming. read on…

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